Thank you. :)
I never know what to think or say when I think about the last decade of Atari. Warner had no idea how to run a tech company, and there were too many projects going nowhere. They took a look at a few months-worth of profits and decided that they could spend money like that forever. Suddenly the videogame market, then the home computer market tanked.
So Jack comes in, and has a lot of hard decisions to make. Cut here, slash there. Discontinue products. Write off factories and warehouses full of product that isn't moving. Kind of like how Steve Jobs came back to Apple and had to gut things fast.
He knew that selling the Atari 8 bits wasn't going to work for long--PC compatibles and Macintoshes were starting to make inroads into homes and smaller businesses. Game machines were dead. He knew what Amiga had cooking, and when Commodore got ahold of that he knew he needed a counter-product. So, like the IBM PC, Atari used off-the-shelf components and built something quick and dirty.
A lot of people took him to task for not advertising. There was advertising, just not in expensive publications. Very little in Byte, for instance. There was a big campaign at first, but then it seemed like nothing. Atari turned inward, producing magazines like Atari Explorer instead. Besides, who is to say that spending $5 million dollars a month on advertising actually is effective? BTW, I heard that it cost $1 million to do a full page colour ad in Byte. So how much for Newsweek, Time, etc., and how effective is it?
I think Atari did a lot with the little money they had. I doubt Tramiel got any richer from his time there. He came into Atari with $40 million personal worth--how much did he leave with?